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Full text of "Rapid Population Growth Consequences And Policy Implications"

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Projections of Northern and Southern Areas
The contrast in growth rates between the Northern Areas and the Southern Areas which was observed between 1920 and 1960 would continue to 2000. The Southern Areas would almost triple between 1960 and 2000, rising from 1.4 to over 4 billion. The Northern Areas would less than double, increasing by 87 percent, from 1.6 to 3 billion. The Southern Areas had a population nearly 300 million below the Northern Areas in 1960; by 2000 they may exceed the Northern Areas by about 1 billion. This shift in relative size could have great political significance by the end of the century.
Projections of Large Nations
Population projections to the year 2000 for the seven largest nations in 1960 are also available or can be derived from the United Nations estimates. Also based on the high variant, they indicate that mainland China by 2000 could have 1.4 billion persons; India, 1.1 billion; the Soviet Union, 403 million; the United States, some 338 million; Indonesia, about 300 million (estimate by writer); Japan, 139 million; and Pakistan, 342 million. Thus, with the exception of Japan each of these nations would have grown enough by 2000 to retain its present ranking. Japan would drop below Pakistan and possibly below Brazil, if Brazil increases at the average rate for Latin America—to 227 million. It is possible that five more nations will pass the 100 million mark by the year 2000: Brazil, Korea, Mexico, Nigeria, and the Philippines.
Of perhaps greatest interest is the projection that the present seven largest countries would constitute a somewhat smaller proportion of the world population in 2000 than they did in 1960, but their aggregate population by the end of the century—over 4 billion—would exceed total world population in 1960.
Caution about Projections
The projections presented here are fictitious models of what may transpire. The actual course of events may be quite different. Moreover, the projections employed are the high variants of the United Nations, which also presented medium and low variants. As said earlier, even the high projections assume birth rate reductions in high fertility areas of a magnitude that is not yet supported by empirical evidence. Therefore, the high projections may be considered quite plausible. If the low projections are regarded as improbable—and there is justification for this viewpoint—the high projections used may be an intermediate between the results of continued present fertility levels and a new low (the United Nations medium) which also assumes relatively great, and as yet not demonstrated, decreases in birth rates in the
hioh fprtilitvs developed areas would have increased to 77 percent of the world's total, and that the population in the developed areas would have shrunk to 23 percent.